E2 Computers - Rants, Raves and Food Reviews

Outlook for free! What next everything is free. 08032012

While this may be the beginning of many rants about free stuff, we want to let everyone know that Microsoft may be trying to go after Gmail!

Well that appears to be the case with them offering Outlook.com as a place to do your mail that looks a lot like Outlook the application on the desk with a few slight changes.


  1. Its in the cloud at www.outlook.com
  2. Its associated to your Microsoft live account
  3. It has some of the Windows 8 Tile elements.

Now these are not bad things this was just my first observation.

RANT: What the heck Microsoft wants us to sell more of their product but like most vendors, they really do not care about the channel!  I am sorry but the small computer shop, VAR, and even small MSP will understand some of this, yes some guys will make money but many may struggle.  What is our incentive to sell Microsoft products when there is little control on the piracy and improper license sales via Internet. What is the incentive to sell product when an individual can create an account in window live, or previous Hotmail, MSN etc. and get free access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and SkyDrive.  Ok this is the beginning as I said of may rants especially when free is at the bottom line, free does not put food on our families tables.

RAVE: Its free! Yes it appears you can have all of these goodies for one very low price FREE! 

Under the Hood: So what do you get with www.Outlook.com. You get a familiar mail interface similar to Outlook and Outlook Express. Oh it also appears that when we try to logon to Hotmail we are directed to the new www.Outlook.com sites.

Outlook main screen:

The mail screen looks a lot like outlook, notice the advertisement bar on the right. Highly interactive, changes as you roll the mouse over it. Sorry for the small screen shot.

Tiles: If you click on the drop down arrow next to the word outlook near the left top you will see this tile panel:

This will allow you to jump from Mail to People (contacts), Calendar, or your SkyDrive.

People: This area allow you to maintain your contacts and includes import methods from FaceBook, Google, LinkedIn and an import file feature.

Microsoft seems to have left the advertising off of this page at the moment.  The contact area will allow you to email or initiate chat with your contacts, it also detects presence of people logged in.

Calendar: This option takes you away from the www.outlook.com and takes you to a windows live style calender that just is not a fit for the feel of this new site. See calender image:

SkyDrive: This is the last element in the www.outlook.com tile list. The SkyDrive is free storage of up to 10G from Microsoft. But, it is not just storage MS uses this area as storage for documents created with the free version of Office products part of the Windows Live platform. These include Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. Note at the time this is written if we try to go to Windows Live home screen it is opening Outlook mail. To get to the Office apps we had to select the SkyDrive. In the image note the icons for office just above the SkyDrive contents:

SkyDrive is more than just storage in the cloud several applications are emerging to automatically send stuff and synchronize to the SkyDrive.  MS sychronizes OneNote notebooks currently via the SkyDrive. Here is a list of some of the current offerings to use the SkyDrive via Desktop, iPhone, Android, and Windows phones.

More apps that work with SkyDrive:

This is not an in depth article on www.outlook.com but it is an attempt to get a high level overview of this new offering.

If you would like help setting up or learning how to use the www.outlook.com, SkyDrive or any of the Office on line products give us a call at E2 Computers in Tarpon Springs and set up an appointment.

You also can reach us by eMail at  OfficeOnlineSupport@end2endsupport.com

Overview and helpful information presented by the techies at www.end2endsupport.com and E2 Computers of Tarpon Springs.

Update 0806201:
Check ou this review of Outlook.com from eWeek “Outlook.com Reimagines Email With an Eye Toward Gmail, Social” by Darrl K. Taft.


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